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Protesters hold a poster reading “STOP shale gas expoiting” during a demonstration against hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in Bucharest April 4, 2013. Around 300 protesters gathered in Bucharest’s University Square in protest against the drilling technique, which uses high pressure injections of water, sand and chemicals to crack open rock and release oil and gas trapped inside. Hundreds of Romanians rallied in several cities to protest against shale gas drilling, voicing concerns over environmental pollution and health hazards.The protesters called on the centre-left government to revoke permits granted to several oil groups, including US giant Chevron, enabling them to start exploration drilling. “Chevron, go home,” and “Down with traitors”, they chanted, in reference to Prime Minister Victor Ponta who earlier this year said he was favorable to shale gas drilling after repeatedly declaring he was against, while he was in opposition.Nearly 1,000 people rallied in Barlad, an eastern Romanian city lying close to a 600,000 hectare concession granted to Chevron.Several hundred persons also staged a protest in Buzias, a resort famous for its mineral water lying in a western Romanian region where a Luxembourg-based company plans to start drilling. A U.S. Energy Information Administration study said the joint reserves for Romania, Bulgaria and Hungary were around 538 billion cubic metres, among the biggest in eastern Europe. AFP PHOTO DANIEL MIHAILESCU

A member of the FBI enters the apartment of Ibragim Todashev in Orlando

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